Description - Debates on Islam and Knowledge in Malaysia and Egypt by Mona Abaza
This study analyses the production of knowledge in Malaysia and Egypt, examining the 'Islamization of knowledge' debate in these two countries. Personal biographies, trajectories of intellectuals moving between the Eastern and Western world, and the institutional connections, are the focus of this research. The sociological production of knowledge is placed in context by comparing Islamic discourse in two societies. What emerges is a description of two very different forms of modern Islam. Malaysia has become a subject of great concern after the Asian crisis. Abaza provides interesting clues in explaining Anwar Ibrahim's power struggle with Mahathir Mohammed and providing an analysis of cross-cultural and religious networks. Southeast Asia in general is today one of the regions most affected by globalization, and is the focus of controversial debates about 'Asian values', as well as the Islamization of society and the confrontation with oppositional Islam. Both issues are of great importance to an understanding of current conditions in Malaysia. Islam in the Egyptian context seems to be developing an inward-looking direction.
The problem of eastern imitation of the West, and how to search for alternative authentic, cultural and institutional solutions in the heritage has become a key concept in the discourse of Islamizers. Notions of secularism and secularisation have led to many heated debates in the Middle East. The irreversibility of modernity, that is, the impossibility of returning backwards except in the form of an invented past, is the fight which divides the two camps (Islamist and secular) in the knowledge debate.
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(216mm x 140mm x mm)
Publisher: Taylor & Francis Ltd
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Book Reviews - Debates on Islam and Knowledge in Malaysia and Egypt by Mona Abaza
Author Biography - Mona Abaza
Mona Abaza is Associate Professor at The American University in Cairo.